German Domestic Intelligence Is Running 100s Of Fake Right-Wing Extremist Social Media Accounts

Hundreds of the radical Nazis and right-wing extremists online are actually German domestic intelligence agents, and many of them may even responsible for “inciting hatred” and even violence. These agents, who once needed to drink and directly socialize with members of the extreme right, are now running right-wing extremist accounts online in Germany.

Germany’s Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (BfV) argues that these accounts are needed to gather information, but critics say that they may also be promoting and actively encouraging radicalism, according to a report from German newspaper Süddeutshce Zeitung.

“This is the future of information gathering,” an unnamed head of a relevant state office told Süddeutsche Zeitung.

According to research by the newspaper, the authority has invested heavily in “virtual agents” since 2019, which it finances with taxpayers’ money. Both the federal office and the federal states employ spies, who besides right-wing extremists, are also tasked with keeping an eye on the left-wing extremists, Islamists, and the “conspiracy-ideological” scene.

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Good News for You Dumb People: YouTube Thought Police Think for You, Big Tech’s Bots Look After Your Best Interests

There’s an interesting moment in a recent YouTube video posted by Dr. John Campbell, a nurse educator who shares informational videos about the latest SARS-CoV-2 and other science on his educational channel. After reviewing government data, Campbell pauses for several seconds and scratches his head. A few beats later he mumbles an apology to the audience, confessing that his head felt a little itchy.

There was no hint from the deadpan tone that Campbell was doing anything other than scratching an itch. But, as some of his over 2.45 million loyal subscribers have boldly pointed out in the comment section, in recent videos Campbell seems darker than usual, almost depressed. Indeed, the nurse educator appears to be doing a lot of hand-wringing and head scratching lately.

It seems, however, that Campbell cannot openly share his concerns with his audience without putting his channel in jeopardy. In order to continue to post videos on YouTube, as he explored in that same head-scratching video, he must censor himself or risk being de-platformed.

YouTube Censors Vaccine Safety and Efficacy Information

YouTube has written guidelines against making videos that discuss vaccine safety, efficacy, and necessity.

This “vaccine misinformation policy” reads: “YouTube doesn’t allow content that poses a serious risk of egregious harm by spreading medical misinformation about currently administered vaccines that are approved and confirmed to be safe and effective by local health authorities and by the World Health Organization (WHO). This is limited to content that contradicts local health authorities’ or the WHO’s guidance on vaccine safety, efficacy, and ingredients.”

The policy applies to vaccine safety, vaccine efficacy, and even information about vaccine ingredients (pdf).

In fact, YouTube will actively delete any content that suggests that vaccines may cause chronic side effects, “outside of rare side effects that are recognized by health authorities.”

This includes YouTube videos posted by medical doctors, scientists, academic researchers, and even patients who have themselves suffered from side effects.

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California’s war on internet freedom

California appears to be waging war on internet freedom.

Last week, California governor Gavin Newsom signed off a new social-media transparency law that poses a serious threat to free speech. Known as AB 587, the law will force social-media companies to disclose their content-moderation policies, and submit detailed descriptions of their efforts to police speech in certain categories, including hate speech, extremism and harassment. Failure to demonstrate that they are regulating, editing and no doubt censoring what appears on their platforms could land social-media companies with big fines.

As noted by Eric Goldman, a law professor at Santa Clara University School of Law, the law will have draconian consequences. It effectively forces social-media companies to please the regulatory authorities now empowered to watch over them.

But that was not the only attack on online freedom launched by California lawmakers last week. Newsom also signed the California Age-Appropriate Design Code Act into law. This is arguably an even more troubling move than AB 587.

The Age-Appropriate Design Code Act aims to protect children from harmful online content, by insisting that children’s interests are prioritised when businesses are designing and developing their online services. This law effectively insists that all internet users should be treated like children.

After all, the law will apply to any business ‘likely to be accessed by a child’, or unable to establish the age of its consumers ‘with a reasonable level of certainty’ – which goes for most businesses. Businesses will therefore have to assume that the child, defined by the act as any individual under 18, is the default user

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Pentagon Opens Review Of Its Clandestine Psychological Operations

A report published last month by research groups Graphika and the Stanford Internet Observatory detailed the activity of fake accounts on Facebook and Twitter that were promoting pro-Western narratives in posts targeting audiences overseas. The social media companies removed around 150 accounts over the past few years, with some removed recently as they were promoting anti-Russia narratives about the war in Ukraine.

The report did not attribute blame for the accounts, but two unnamed military officials speaking to the Post hinted that US Central Command (CENTCOM) was involved. Separately, the Post said that Facebook removed fictitious personas created by CENTCOM to counter a Chinese claim that Covid-19 originated from the US Army bio lab in Fort Detrick, Maryland.

In response to the Graphika and Stanford Internet Observatory report, Colin Kahl, the undersecretary of defense for policy, ordered the review, which instructed US military command involved in psychological operations to fill the White House in on their activities by next month. Kahl said he wanted to know what types of operations were being carried out and if they were effective.

The US military has a long history of psychological operations, but its activities online in that area are shrouded in secrecy. While there are military units that specialize in psyops, such as the US Army’s 4th Psychological Operations Group, the Pentagon also employs more covert forces in this area.

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Influencer says he was offered money to spread anti-Trump Jan 6 lies on TikTok, brings receipts

Attorney and TikToker @TrialByPreston revealed in a video that the Good Information Foundation attempted to pay him $400 to spread unsubstantiated rumours and misinformation about January 6President Trump, and his 2020 presidential campaign. 

“I was just offered $400 to make an anti-Donald Trump propaganda post related to the January 6 investigation that is completely not true,” Preston Moore, Esq. said in the video. The Good Information Foundation, headed by Rick Stengel, Former Under Secretary of State in Obama administration, emphasizes that “America is in an information crisis,” and that “disinformation is threatening public health, safety, social trust and democracy.”

Moore emphasized that he’s not a Trump supporter to “give a little bit of context,” and noted that he’s an attorney who posts legal news on TikTok. Other videos on his channel include discussions of the special master that was appointed to review documents seized by the FBI from Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home, on the Parkland school shooter, on the Constitution, or other matters.

Then he launched into what happened, saying: “I get an email from somebody at the Good Information Foundation.” That person, he said, obscuring the name, “sent me a message letting me know she represented the Good Information Foundation and that she was willing to offer a paid collaboration to discuss some topics related to January 6.

“I said ‘sure, why not,’ I’ll learn some more,” he said. He learned that the Good Information Foundation would pay him $400 to make a post on his page and share it to Instagram, and that there were specific bullet points that they’d like him to hit to earn that fee. 

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Hong Kong man jailed for “sedition” for criticizing government online

53-year-old Raymond Chen has been sentenced for four months for violating Hong Kong’s “sedition” law. He had shared 23 posts online, criticizing Beijing and the Hong Kong government. Some of the posts called for the independence of Hong Kong.

Chen pleaded guilty to sharing posts criticizing the government. He shared the posts on his Telegram Channel between July 2020 and June 2022.

The Telegram Channel, called “HK’s upcoming War of Independence,” had over 500 users. Some of the posts had the slogan “Liberate Hong Kong, revolution of our times.” The slogan was the used for the 2019 pro-democracy protests.

Other posts claimed that the police and MTR Corporation were working with the triads. Others had images of a national emblem that had been desecrated. And other posts blamed the government for the Covid-19 pandemic and sparking the anti-government protests in 2019.

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NBC News Asks Twitter, TikTok to Censor Videos of John Fetterman Speaking

NBC News falsely claimed that footage of John Fetterman struggling to speak during a recent rally was “doctored” and urged social media companies to censor. Fetterman, who suffered a stroke earlier this year, has struggled with public speaking while recovering, something the senate hopeful has himself admitted to. The outlet flagged videos of Fetterman speaking to Twitter and TikTok, baselessly claiming that they were in violation of their political misinformation policies. TikTok complied and removed the videos.

NBC News took issue with highlight reels of a recent Montgomery County rally in which Fetterman struggled through parts of his speech. The outlet accused one prominent conservative social media account of deceptively editing video of speeches to “create the perception that what he was saying was nonsensical.”

The report accused social media platforms of ignoring their own policies “against political misinformation” in allowing the videos to stay up.

NBC News Deputy Editor of technology Benjamin Goggin wrote, “Deceptively edited videos that have been viewed hundreds of thousands of times on Twitter and TikTok exaggerate the speech issues that have plagued John Fetterman, the Democratic nominee for Pennsylvania’s open U.S. Senate seat, after he had a stroke in May.”

Explaining the alleged edits, Goggin claimed they consisted of “cutting out the sound of the audience to make it appear as if he had abruptly stopped speaking (some of the stops occurred when he was pausing during moments of applause and crowd reaction, according to unedited videos seen by NBC News).”

The NBC News reporter singled out popular digital strategist Greg Price, whose supercut of Fetterman’s speech had been 600,000 times when the report was published.

Goggin claimed that the videos violate Twitter and TikTok’s policies “against political misinformation,” and the outlet flagged these videos for the platforms itself. TikTok ultimately removed the videos from its platform.

“So NBC News decided to accuse me of doctoring videos of John Fetterman that I posted. (I didn’t doctor anything),” Price wrote in a tweet. “They also reached out to Twitter to try and get them censored.”

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Governor Newsom hopes new social media law will help censorship of “hate speech” and “disinformation”

A bill has been signed into law in California, designed to obligate social media companies to submit enforcement reports twice a year to the state attorney general, and publicly post policies on “hate speech,” disinformation, harassment, and extremism.

After signing the law – AB 587 – Governor Gavin Newsom announced that this is a unique social media “transparency and accountability measure” that is meant to protect Californians from hate and discrimination.

We obtained a copy of the bill for you here.

The reports will require tech companies to explain how and if they define and remove content from a number of categories, such as hate speech or racism, extremism or radicalization, disinformation or misinformation, harassment, and foreign political interference.

The reports are also expected to go into automated moderation, what happens to flagged content, and how many times it has been viewed.

Newsom seems to believe that social media is being weaponized to spread hate, disinformation, harassment, and lies that threaten communities, and vowed that California will not “stand by” as this is happening.

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Facebook spied on private messages of Americans who questioned 2020 election

Facebook has been spying on the private messages and data of American users and reporting them to the FBI if they express anti-government or anti-authority sentiments — or question the 2020 election — according to sources within the Department of Justice.

Under the FBI collaboration operation, somebody at Facebook red-flagged these supposedly subversive private messages over the past 19 months and transmitted them in redacted form to the domestic terrorism operational unit at FBI headquarters in Washington, DC, without a subpoena.

“It was done outside the legal process and without probable cause,” alleged one of the sources, who spoke on condition of ­anonymity.

“Facebook provides the FBI with private conversations which are protected by the First Amendment without any subpoena.”

These private messages then have been farmed out as “leads” to FBI field offices around the country, which subsequently requested subpoenas from the partner US Attorney’s Office in their district to officially obtain the private conversations that Facebook already had shown them.

But when the targeted Facebook users were investigated by agents in a local FBI field office, sometimes using covert surveillance techniques, nothing criminal or violent turned up.

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Biden’s Sneaky Censors

“Tech platforms are notoriously opaque,” the White House complained last week, saying Americans deserve to know more about how online forums decide “when and how to remove content from their sites.” Yet the Biden administration, which routinely pressures social media companies to suppress speech it does not like, is hardly a model of transparency in this area.

In a lawsuit filed last May, Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry and Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt argue that the administration’s “Orwellian” crusade against “misinformation” violates the First Amendment. They are trying to find out more about this “vast ‘Censorship Enterprise’ across a multitude of federal agencies,” and the administration is fighting them every step of the way.

So far, Landry and Schmitt have identified 45 federal officials who “communicate with social media platforms” about curtailing “misinformation.” Emails obtained during discovery show those platforms are desperate to comply with the government’s demands for speech restrictions, including the removal of specific messages and accounts.

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